Sunday, October 26, 2008

Berlin, Mon Amour

I was in Berlin primarily to submit paperwork for my Spanish passport, but also, I’m happy to report, to prep for a work contract that had earlier been canceled, then rematerialized, meaning I’ll be in Berlin a fair bit of mid-November to mid-January. After that, there's more uncertainty of the sort that seems to have qualified my life for the last year and a half; I seem incapable of knowing where I'll be living for any more than four months in advance. But the reasons to stick it out in Berlin continue to be limited and unsatisfactory. The lovely N. is, to my great dismay, not being assigned to Berlin for work after all, and will be exiled to the impossibly expensive Zürich where all her friends, sadly, will have to resort to eating shoe leather to save sufficient money to visit her. And Mr. Performance Artist quite surpassed himself on this last visit, 1) by informing me first that I have very few years left before menopause, after which surely no man will ever look at me again, and 2) after barely putting out (if you'll allow me a certain indelicacy in expressing myself), by indicating that he had felt “obliged” to do so. His capacity to sabotage his own case, exceeds the realm of amazing and becomes, flatly, tiresome.

But still, the second week in October, Berlin exerted itself, with exemplary autumn weather: the sun warming my skin as I walked through the Tiergarten to and from the Spanish embassy and orange-yellow leaves falling gently from the trees lining the canals of the River Spree, whispering, “Katchita, Katchita, come back.” By the time I headed back to Madrid mid-month, the usual gray had re-asserted itself, reminding me what to expect in November. Still, I am grateful that it is to be a relatively gentle weaning, from both Berlin and beautiful bad boys.

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